From integrated transit systems to innovative parking solutions – all of the 2012 Sustainable Transport Award-nominated cities are exemplars in implementing integrated transport solutions. Over the next week, we will cover profiles of the nominated cities – Medellín, San Francisco, Cape Town, and Buenos Aires – culminating in the presentation of the Sustainable Transport Award on January 24 at Transportation Research Board conference in Washington D.C.
Medellín, Colombia is a 2012 nominee for its efforts to improve public transport, create better public spaces, and improve road safety in the city. These efforts include the development of a bus rapid system, MetroPlús, which is fully integrated with their mass transit system – currently made up of an underground metro and cable car systems. It is the only city in its region to feature full bus rapid transit and metro integration. This year the city has extended its mobility options to include a bicycle share program, EnCicla, which provides 145 bicycles for public use.
Medellín has also begun to recuperate its public spaces through pedestrian connection improvements, urban promenades, and the creation of environmental parks. The city has built 1.6 million square meters of new public space, including 25 new parks and 11 new promenades. This has brought direct benefits to 800,000 people, in the form of increased and safer access to public transport. The Intelligent Mobility System (SIMM), aimed at improving mobility and road safety for all users, has reduced response time to road side accidents from 40 minutes (2008) to 18 minutes (2011). Medellín has also implemented vehicle emissions controls to reduce the sulfur content of diesel fuels and improve air quality.